Major recreational fishing survey gets go-ahead
21 April 2010
The largest study into recreational fishing in a decade will commence this year, Fisheries and Aquaculture Minister Phil Heatley announced today.
Costing $5 million over the next four years, the study results will greatly improve understanding of how many people are going fishing, diving and gathering shellfish; where they fish and how much they are catching.
Work on designing the project will begin immediately with the research scheduled to start in time for the 2011-2012 summer fishing season.
“This study will provide important information for setting catch limits that make sure there will be fish to catch for generations to come,” Mr Heatley says.
“We want to get the full range of recreational fishers involved and included in the study; from the avid fishers out in their boats every chance they get, through to the families who take their kids fishing off the wharf a few times a year or gather shellfish on their summer holiday,” he says.
“This research will give a clearer picture of how many people are going fishing and how much fish is being caught so I can have confidence catch limits are meeting the needs of recreational fishers and current catches are sustainable.”
In a separate project due to start on 1 October this year, recreational charter fishing boats will start reporting how often they go fishing and how much of particular high value species of fish their customers are catching in particular areas.
“All of these research and reporting projects will combine to give us the most comprehensive picture of recreational fishing in New Zealand that we have ever had,” Mr Heatley says.